SITE OF IFFLEY WATER MILL

Site of Iffley Mill,RIGHT bank at Iffley Lock
1910: Iffley Mill in Thames Valley Villages by Charles G Harper
Iffley Mill is mentioned from the 12th century.
1445: Iffley Mill bought by Lincoln College.

1782: Iffley weir with eel bucks and water wheel -

Iffley weir with eel bucks and water wheel 1782
Iffley weir, eel-bucks and water wheel, 1782.

1791: Samuel Ireland -

Iffley Mill, Samuel Ireland, 1791
Iffley Mill, Samuel Ireland, 1791

... a delightful range of verdant scenery, Oxford still remaining in view, till we reach the village of Iffley, about a mile and a half below the city.
This enchanting spot is a combination of all that is desirable in picturesque landscape. It is situated on a beautiful eminence, commanding an extensive distance, which includes every object in ths university ; the scene is completed by the meandering course of the river beneath, on the banks of which, immediately under the eye, is a spacious mill, worked by the current of the stream, which gives a happy foreground to the rural objects above.
From such an assemblage, what a complete selection of parts for the pencil of a Hobbima or a Ruysdael ! The admirers of English landscape, will, I flatter myself, receive some gratification from the annexed sketch, which, being faithful, will convey a tolerable idea of the beauties of the scenery.
THE church of Iffley, on the summit, is a fine remain of the Saxon style of building, particularly its portal, which is richly decorated.

1837: Iffley Mill, in Memorials of Oxford by James Ingram -

The MILL. The picturesque appearance of Iffley Mill has often attracted the notice of artists ; and a portion of it is here given in a woodcut, from a beautiful drawing by Mr. Mackenzie. There has been a mill here almost from time immemorial. In the survey of 7 Ed. I. it is noticed in conjunction with a messuage and yard- land and four acres of meadow, with a free water for fishing from the village of Iffley to the mill called Boy-Mill. But there was an annual rent of 44 shillings payable to the lord of Iffley. This mill, with the appurtenances, has long been the property of Lincoln college. The sum of £400 was given in 1622, by Sir Francis Stonor and William Wickham of Abingdon, to Philip Pitts of Iffley, for his interest in a lease of this property for sixty-one years granted by the college in the time of queen Elizabeth to his father, Arthur Pitts, before mentioned.

Iffley Mill, 1837
Iffley Mill, in Memorials of oxford by James Ingram, 1837

1870: Iffley Mill, Henry Taunt -

Iffley Mill, Henry Taunt, 1870
Iffley Mill, Henry Taunt, 1870
© Oxfordshire County Council Photographic Archive; HT1072

1885: Dickens's Dictionary of the Thames -

[Iffley Mill] has been painted in every kind of medium, and photographed in every sort of camera, till it must be as familiar to most people as Windsor Castle itself. Rarely, indeed, is there an exhibition of the Academy, or the Dudley, or of any of the water-colour societies, without at least one bit from Iffley.

1885: Iffley Mill, The Royal River -

Iffley Mill 1885, The Royal River
Iffley Mill 1885, The Royal River.

1885: Iffley Mill from above, with old boat rollers, Henry Taunt -

Iffley Mill with old boat rollers, Henry Taunt, 1885
Iffley Mill with old boat rollers, Henry Taunt, 1885
© Oxfordshire County Council Photographic Archive; HT5482

1886: Julia Isham Taylor -

To one familiar with English landscape painting there is as much need of describing the beauties of Iffley Mill as there is of acquainting a Dresdener with the composition of the Sistine Madonna.

1890: Iffley Mill, Francis Frith -

1890:  Iffley Mill, Francis Frith
1890:  Iffley Mill, Francis Frith

1891: The Stream of Pleasure, Joseph & Elizabeth Robins Pennell -

The minute you get through Iffley Lock [ going downstream ], you see [ on the left - the RIGHT bank ] Iffley Mill.
It is only a very old white-washed, brown-roofed mill, with a few poplars, and water falling white below the weir; but the composition is the loveliest you will find between Oxford and London.
Every one knows it; it has been photographed, and drawn, and word-painted, until it is associated with the name of Oxford as is Magdalen Tower or Folly Bridge, and there is no show-place that comes so honestly by its reputation.

1896: A young man, Arthur Thomas Green, sketched Iffley Mill while on honeymoon with his wife Rosie. He left a sketch book and his great grandson has asked that the sketch be included on this site -

Iffley Mill, Arthur Thomas Green, 1896
Iffley Mill, Arthur Thomas Green, 1896
Copyright Stephen T Green, by kind permission

Iffley Mill, glass slide, Marriott C Morris -

Iffley Mill, glass slide, Marriott C Morris
Iffley Mill, glass slide, Marriott C Morris

Iffley Mill, lantern slide 1883-1906, W.C.Hughes, research by Dr Wilson, courtesy of Pat Furley

Iffley Mill etching, Frederick Miller -

Iffley Mill etching, Frederick Miller
Iffley Mill etching, Frederick Miller

Iffley Mill, E W Haslehurst -

Iffley Mill,  E W Haslehurst
Iffley Mill, E W Haslehurst, 1935

1906: G.E.Mitton -

when we come in sight of Iffley itself we may well exclaim that it would be hard to find a sweeter spot.
There are stone walls, thatched cottages and farmyards, hay and orchards, elms, alders, and silver-stemmed birches; in consequence a quiet, rural atmosphere broods over all. The cows feed down to the edge of the river, and swallows dart about overhead, while perhaps a man paddling a canoe shoots up and away again, his white flannels and the strength and grace of his movement irresistibly recalling a swan.
The mill, half stone, half wooden cased, is very ancient; the massive foundations have become like rock from their long immersion in the running water.
There is a great quiet pool behind the lock island, and here and there a glimpse may be caught of the square tower of the famous church, which is not far off, but is well hidden by trees.

1906: Iffley Mill, Mortimer Menpes -

Iffley Mill, 1906, Mortimer Menpes
Iffley Mill, 1906, Mortimer Menpes

1908: May 20th, Iffley Mill was destroyed by fire -

Iffley Mill Fire 1908
Iffley Mill Fire, 20th May, 1908

1908: Iffley Mill in ruins, Henry Taunt

Iffley Mill in ruins, Henry Taunt, 1908
Iffley Mill in ruins, Henry Taunt, 1908
© Oxfordshire County Council Photographic Archive; HT10729

At the foot of the public footpath leading from Kill Lane to Iffley Lock lies a millstone, above which, set into the wall, is an inscription -

The millstone from Iffley Mill which stood here for many centuries and was destroyed by fire on May 20th 1908

Can someone check that Inscription please?
Below Iffley Lock there is sometimes considerable current and disturbance from the weir when more water than usual is running.